Calendar An icon of a desk calendar. Cancel An icon of a circle with a diagonal line across. Caret An icon of a block arrow pointing to the right. Email An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of the Facebook "f" mark. Google An icon of the Google "G" mark. Linked In An icon of the Linked In "in" mark. Logout An icon representing logout. Profile An icon that resembles human head and shoulders. Telephone An icon of a traditional telephone receiver. Tick An icon of a tick mark. Is Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes. Is Not Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes with a diagonal line through it. Pause Icon A two-lined pause icon for stopping interactions. Quote Mark A opening quote mark. Quote Mark A closing quote mark. Arrow An icon of an arrow. Folder An icon of a paper folder. Breaking An icon of an exclamation mark on a circular background. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Caret An icon of a caret arrow. Clock An icon of a clock face. Close An icon of the an X shape. Close Icon An icon used to represent where to interact to collapse or dismiss a component Comment An icon of a speech bubble. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Ellipsis An icon of 3 horizontal dots. Envelope An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Home An icon of a house. Instagram An icon of the Instagram logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. Magnifying Glass An icon of a magnifying glass. Search Icon A magnifying glass icon that is used to represent the function of searching. Menu An icon of 3 horizontal lines. Hamburger Menu Icon An icon used to represent a collapsed menu. Next An icon of an arrow pointing to the right. Notice An explanation mark centred inside a circle. Previous An icon of an arrow pointing to the left. Rating An icon of a star. Tag An icon of a tag. Twitter An icon of the Twitter logo. Video Camera An icon of a video camera shape. Speech Bubble Icon A icon displaying a speech bubble WhatsApp An icon of the WhatsApp logo. Information An icon of an information logo. Plus A mathematical 'plus' symbol. Duration An icon indicating Time. Success Tick An icon of a green tick. Success Tick Timeout An icon of a greyed out success tick. Loading Spinner An icon of a loading spinner.

Skilled workers still in demand

TEAMWORK: Mathew Donald, an operations supervisor for Petrofac, left, and  David Wilson, Centrica Energy’s regional director for the central and northern North Sea
TEAMWORK: Mathew Donald, an operations supervisor for Petrofac, left, and David Wilson, Centrica Energy’s regional director for the central and northern North Sea

With new projects coming on stream and platforms like Kittiwake producing oil and gas for years longer than expected, the offshore industry needs new skilled workers now more than ever.

Companies from operators down through the supply chain want to recruit hundreds of people in the coming years to cope with the anticipated rise in demand.

Despite the clamour for young people to join the 440,000-strong oil and gas workforce in the UK, many are still being guided away from the sector.

Mathew Donald, who at 27 is already an operations supervisor on Kittiwake for Petrofac, has worked offshore for nine years.

Mr Donald, who is originally from Inverurie and now lives at Insch, said he joined the industry as a 16-year-old apprentice despite being advised against it.

He added: “I was told then by my guidance teacher that the industry was on the way out and it was the wrong way for me to go. I realised quite quickly that just wasn’t true. There are still a lot of opportunities there – there are a lot of people working offshore who are winding down towards retirement, so it opens it up for the younger generation.”

While in the past many oil and gas firms targeted the mining industry or the Merchant Navy for new recruits, they are increasingly having to look elsewhere for people interested in going offshore.

Companies like Petrofac are now casting the net wider and approaching marine cadets or former forces people to address the problem of skills shortages offshore.

The skills gap is also partly being met by people like John Beckley, 36, who started working on Kittiwake six years ago. Mr Beckley, who hails from Middlesbrough and is a maintenance supervisor on the North Sea platform, said: “I worked onshore in chemical plants and saw a lot of the lads moving on to go offshore.

“I had the right experience as well and decided to follow them, and I have never looked back.”

Recommended for you

More from Energy Voice

Latest Posts